Who Am I? A College Essay


Grace Lee

Other than our staff’s essays another source for inspiration and help is Skyline’s very own Cube!

By Staff:  Skyline Student, Class of ‘23

I’m an avid people-pleaser. 

I satiate my parents by making dinner easier and not complaining when they add cilantro to my food, though I feel as if I’ve reminded them about a million times that it tastes like soap. I appeal to my social circles by always being present to functions even when my mental health fails me. I satisfy my dance instructors by spending an excessive amount of time on the routines we’re working on instead of prioritizing my R.E.M. cycle.

It’s almost as if everyone else’s perception of me is more important than the reality of it all: I’ve lost direction.

Freshman year of high school, my grades were stable along with my relationships and I was in my prime in terms of a potential dance career.

Sophomore year of high school was not the same. The simple lesson plans, independent assignments, and untroubled parents weren’t exerting enough pressure and by the time Junior year came around, I was losing momentum rapidly. But rather than reaching out for help from my parents, I managed to pick up the pieces on my own to continue my streak of pleasing them.

This school year, I quickly noticed, however, that the second I don’t tailor my responses and actions to fit other people’s appeal, everything tends to fall apart. It’s a complicated dilemma; I want to be my own person and do things and feel things for myself, though when I do, I feel unaccomplished and as though I’m a burden to my peers.  It feels selfish and greedy, as if I’m taking away energy that could be used towards the people around me and what’s going on in their lives.  Maybe it’s an internal battle for them and I don’t want to blame them for that. I would be lying if I said this blessing didn’t hurt me sometimes. I start to lose touch with what I want and who I want to be.

Every year since the beginning of high school, it feels like I lose more and more individuality due to this recalcitrant need for approval that eats at me until it’s satisfied, and even then it doesn’t last and suddenly I’m hungry for more. That being said, I love this talent that I have. It would be different if I wanted to make people happy and couldn’t, but – not to toot my own horn – I’ve been pretty successful. Not only does it come across as “charismatic”, allowing for easier connections, but I get favors in return.  One of those, and the main one, being the simple satisfaction I get after giving other people assistance. 

In conclusion, counseling or therapy were my dream careers for a while. To be a therapist is to be someone who verbally/mentally (and possibly physically) aids a hurting person into a better, safer mindset. That’s what I wanted my job to be. 

I wanted to help the hurt people though I don’t know how great I would be at that in the long run. I like to say I know the process of human interaction and social cues, and I do strongly believe this, but only to a certain extent. 

I’m not a yes-man, I’m not an instigator. I just know what it feels like to have people constantly tell you you’re wrong. If the topic isn’t too hot, why not let them win one?